Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fur Wars - Chapter 28

Albert looked on mystified. They’d come into the clearing in high spirits, but in keeping with his recent exposures and experiences in this strange yet familiar world, things didn’t quite pan out as expected.

For starters, as a God, he kind of assumed that maybe the locals would have been a bit more welcoming. Instead, when they made it into what was presumably the rabbits’ forest headquarters, they’d come face to face with a collection of hostile looking rabbits accompanied by a much taller, female, smooth-skinned monkey.

“Which God is she?” Albert had asked of Skoda, but his translator remained silent.

Then all that happened was the small rabbit that Albert been tied up with earlier, climbed out of the armoured vehicle that he’d been travelling in and proceeded to have a fairly heated exchange with another rabbit that Albert assumed must be some sort of leader.

The large, smooth, pale-skinned creature had looked over to Skoda at one point and started shaking her head. Then, amazingly she and one of the rabbits had climbed into what looked like some sort of shuttlecraft. The lead rabbit set light to a stack of wood beneath the craft, there was the sound of large gong being struck and ZAP! A flash of lightening connected with the top of the shuttle. The rabbits then all started singing some bizarre incantation, before the lead rabbit opened the door of the craft to reveal—not unlike a corny stage magician—that the occupants were no longer there.

The rabbits then carried on chattering away. Skoda, notably, remained resolutely silent throughout. Then, from nowhere, there appeared a multitude of other rabbits. Albert and a number of the rabbits that he’s been travelling with were being ushered towards the large stack of wood that had been on fire. Skoda, however, was singled out by the lead rabbit and marched into one of the larger huts.

Then, faint at first and far off, Albert heard the unmistakable sound of engines. He looked skyward and caught sight of the moon, familiar as ever and smiling down. To the right he noticed a star, brighter than the rest, much brighter, he may have been imagining things, but he felt sure the star was moving.

The engine noises were growing much more noticeably now though, and so Albert’s attention, along with the attention of pretty much every living, breathing, creature in the forest clearing, turned in the direction of the noise. What they saw stopped them in their tracks.

Moving into view above the treetops was a spacecraft like nothing Albert had ever seen before. Bristling with armaments that swivelled around maniacally, occasionally releasing a volley of laser fire into the clearing disintegrating the rabbits where they stood, bright strobe lights flashed in unison giving proceedings an eerie staccato slow motion effect. Along the front of the jet-black craft in letters as large as a house were the letters O-T-M-I-V.

“Otmiv,” mused Albert, “nope, never heard of it.”

The ship moved over the clearing, completely obscuring the moon, the strobe lights went off and everything was thrown into darkness. All that remained was the deafening roar of the engines overhead.

A beam of light, so bright that Albert was forced to shield his eyes, connected the ship with the ground. After no more than 10 seconds the light went out throwing the clearing, once again, into darkness. Moments later, the ship above the clearing shot into the sky until it became another sparkle in the firmament and the forest was thrown into silence.

Albert’s eyes, which had been cast skywards, were drawn back down to earth by a new but familiar sound: A deep ZZUMMMMM. Its source was at exactly the same point that the bright beam of light had just touched down in the clearing. It was an orange light sword not unlike the one Skoda had been wielding earlier. This one, though, was being held aloft by a much taller figure. Proportionally, it looked much larger than the female in white robes that Albert had seen only moments earlier, this creature though was dressed in purple armour, with a flowing purple cape and a deep purple mask with wide dead eyes and sneering grilled mouth.

“At last we are re-united brother Albert,” said a deep metallic voice from within the shiny purple helmet.
“Who the bloody hell are you?” asked Albert.
“You know me only too well.
“I’ve never seen you in my life.”
“Did you sleep with your arm above your head like I told you?”
“I’m afraid Garth died some time after you fled Jud. But by that time we had discovered the science of re-animation. Enabling an almost limitless line of sequels. My name is the Imperial Lord Vimto—more machine now, than man.”
“It can’t be, it can’t be true…” screamed Albert.

“It’s all true,” said a voice from the other side of the clearing, it was Skoda stepping out of the larger hut.

ZZUMMMMM! Skoda’s green lightsabre sparked into life. “I have something here for you. Your father wanted you to have this when you were old enough, but your uncle wouldn’t allow it. He feared you might follow old Skoda on some damn fool idealistic crusade like your brother did. It’s your father’s lightsabre. This is the weapon of a Judy Knight. Not as clumsy or as random as a blaster, but an elegant weapon for a more civilized age. For over a thousand generations, the Judy Knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the Old Republic of Jud. Before the dark times, before the Empire.”

Vimto stepped towards Skoda and vice versa. Then Skoda turned off his lightsabre. “You can’t win, Vimto. If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine,” he said.
“Don’t talk bollocks,” said Vimto whose lightsabre then sliced through the air and then through the space where Skoda had once stood.

Skoda’s lightsabre and robes dropped to the floor. Vimto turned to Albert, “Join me brother and together we will rule the universe as brother and, er brother.”

Albert pondered this proposition for a second. “OK,” he said, “but if I could just capture the moment for posterity that would be great?”

Albert took out his mobile phone. “These things have got excellent cameras y’know?” said Albert.

After a moment’s consideration Vimto agreed. “How do you want me?” he asked.
“Well, we’re going to need a bit of light, because the flash on this thing isn’t much cop. So perhaps over by that fire,” suggested Albert.
Vimto made his way over to the fire. “Now,” said Albert, “just lift your head up a bit, that’s it, now just turn your body, but keep looking at me. OK. Now just move your cape out of the way so I can see your outfit, that’s it, maybe put your lightsabre on and kind of hold it at an angle. Lovely, lovely. Now, if you could just go back a bit, go on, just a bit further, go on, keep going, keep going, just another couple of ste…”

Vimto tripped backwards into the shuttle craft that lay on the fire.

“Now!” shouted Albert.

BOOOOIIINNGGGGGGGG!!!! Went the Sacrificial gong. Then, as is ever the case, moments later came a blinding flash of lightening and clap of deafening thunder, the shockwave of which knocked Albert, Derek, all the other rabbits from their feet.

The leader of the rabbits, slightly stunned, made his way over to the shuttlecraft, opened the door and then turned around and gave the universal thumbs up signal that everything is OK. Vimto had completely disappeared.

Albert slumped to the floor exhausted. “What the boggin’ hell am I supposed to do now?” he asked himself.
“Force it,” said a voice in Albert’s head, “understand you now the Bunnies can.”
“With you always I will be. Talk to the Bunnies, through me you can. Use the lightening strike of their Sacrifice to power your ship’s batteries you will, back into orbit you must go to save the Bunnies. Face your father you must.”

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